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Polyspecific, antiviral immune response distinguishes multiple sclerosis and neuromyelitis optica
  1. S Jarius (sjarius{at}med.uni-muenchen.de)
  1. Weatherall Institute of Molecular Medicine, University of Oxford, United Kingdom
    1. D Franciotta
    1. University of Pavia, Italy
      1. R Bergamaschi
      1. University of Pavia, United Kingdom
        1. S Rauer
        1. Univeristy of Freiburg, Germany
          1. KP Wandinger
          1. University of Berlin, Germany
            1. HF Petereit
            1. University of Cologne, Germany
              1. M Maurer
              1. University of Wuerzburg, Germany
                1. H Tumani
                1. University of Ulm, Germany
                  1. A Vincent
                  1. University of Oxford, United Kingdom
                    1. P Eichhorn
                    1. University of Munich, Germany
                      1. Wildemann Brigitte
                      1. University of Heidelberg, Germany
                        1. M Wick
                        1. University of Munich, Germany
                          1. R Voltz (raymond.voltz{at}uk-koeln.de)
                          1. University of Cologne, Germany

                            Abstract

                            Background: A polyspecific, intrathecal humoral immune response against neurotropic viruses such as measles, rubella, and varicella zoster virus (MRZ reac-tion, MRZR) is present in 80-100% of MS patients, but has not been evaluated in patients with neuromyelitis optica (NMO) so far.

                            Aim: To evaluate whether MRZR testing distinguishes NMO and MS.

                            Methods: Twenty patients with NMO and 42 with MS were included. The intrathe-cal synthesis of antibodies against measles, rubella, and varicella zoster virus was detected by calculation of the respective antibody indices (AI).

                            Results: A positive MRZ reaction as defined by a combination of at least two posi-tive AIs was found in 37/42 MS, but only in 1/20 NMO patients (p<0.0001). Median AI values differed significantly between groups (p<0.0005).

                            Conclusion: The polyspecific, antiviral humoral immune response characteristic for MS is widely missing in NMO, irrespective of the patients’ NMO-IgG status. Our findings further strengthen the case of NMO being pathologically distinct from MS.

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